A-ha! You thought I had the baby, didn’t you?

Sorry. I was simply rendered immobile yesterday with extreme post-walking exhaustion. I did, however, get two rugs shampooed (by Tim). That’s something, right?

Anyway, straight to today’s topic so I can get to eatin’ some of my fresh-baked banana bread.

Tim and I are planning on a natural birth with the help of a doula. For those of you just joining us, a doula is a professional labor support woman. She will be with us every step of the way once labor starts, answering questions, helping me to manage my pain and suggesting things that Tim can do to help. She basically takes over the “coach” position, leaving Tim to do what he does best: cheer me on. This takes mucho pressure off of him to remember all those Lamaze breathing patterns, massage techniques and other pain distraction measures we learned back in childbirth class (also taught by our doula).

Our doula Judy came highly recommended, and I must admit that I feel much more secure knowing that she will be there to help, instead of just the two of us trying to make things up as we go along. I mean, Tim and I have never done this before, so how the heck are we supposed to know what’s going on? Judy has attended so many births, she’s pretty much seen and done it all. She’s got some interesting stories about dads that punched out the doctor, moms that completely lost all control and other frightening stuff. But mainly, she’s the one that’s going to be there to say, ‘Let’s try this first,’ when I’m screaming, ‘Get me the drugs!’ She won’t stand in the way if I truly decide that drugs are what I want, but there’s a much larger chance that I’ll get through labor without them if she’s there. As opposed to Tim, who I’m sure would be so freaked out by seeing me in pain that he’d give in at my first whimper. ‘Can we get this woman some drugs?!’ God love him.

Our friend Brooke used a doula last summer to deliver her nine pound plus baby without drugs. And Brooke was definitely not blessed with the kind of child-bearing hips that I sport. I say that if she can endure many hours of labor (back labor, even!) and two hours of pushing without drugs and with a doula, then bring on the doula!

My main point that I have failed to mention over the past few days is that I am not afraid of childbirth. I know that this is what my body was made to do. The same things apply to breastfeeding and circumcision. I mean, who are we to think that God created us or our children imperfectly? That baby boys are somehow born with a flaw that must be “fixed” by modern science? Or that some man-made formula could even begin to compare to the food that our bodies automatically create when our babies are born? (Please don’t even get me started on my feminist rant about formula companies keeping women down.) Or that childbirth is something that must be medicated or surgically remedied (by C-section)? If there’s one thing that I always try to do in my life, it’s experience everything to the fullest. I want to know this experience, just like I feel I’ve been able to fully experience this pregnancy.

Now, you have to promise not to laugh at me if I’m like, ‘Dude, it really hurt. I totally got the epidural.’ After all, you’re my friends, right? And my philosophy has always been: I’ve never done this before. I can’t make up my mind about something until I’m actually there.

So I’m keeping my options open. But I’m still trying to do the things that can help me reach my goal of being all-natural earth mother goddess. Except for the Twinkies.

OK, no more topics! Back to the whimsy!